Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Question of the day

Can you prove that you are not already the mind of enlightenment?

This question came up in zazen, like all great questions.

My immediate response was, yes, of course I can!


Because I still do stupid things.

From what mind would you know that?

Ummm. Ok, but I am oblivious much of the time.

What mind is able to recognize that?


In fact, what mind “knows” it is “not enlightened”? What mind could possibly know that?

Take all the time you need.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Foundations of Zen Practice

Ordinary Mind will offer a Monday evening class in the foundations of Zen practice in January and February.

This course is intended to introduce new and experienced Zen practitioners, as well as those who are generally curious about Zen practice, to its fundamental principles and concepts. The class will provide information and experiential teaching about the origins of Buddhism, the life and teachings of the Buddha, and the cultivation of practice in meditation and in the life of the sangha, the community of practitioners. Zen as practiced here at Ordinary Mind fosters the awakened mind through meditation, study, relational and experiential practice, and inquiry. It is a practical application of time-tested methods for deepening awareness and intimacy with all things, here and now, rather than striving for a mystical or esoteric experience or formal monastic discipline. Our practice, as Joko has taught it, focuses on waking up in our everyday lives, our ongoing relationships, and our ordinary activities. Please join us to explore together just what this practice of Zen offers.

January 21-February 25
Monday evenings
7:00-8:00 class 8:00-8:30 meditation
Suggested donation: $60.00

Note: Please do not allow your financial situation to hinder your participation. Just offer what may be appropriate to your circumstances.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

What’s Your Consumption Factor? - New York Times

Here is a very thought-provoking article by Jared Diamond, the author of Guns, Germs, and Steel: What’s Your Consumption Factor? - New York Times

The Zen tradition has for over a thousand years pointed to the dangers associated with greed and ignorance and hatred. These factors afflict us at every level from the individual to the global. Perhaps this year will be a time of awakening and a great turning from the self-centered dream of gratifying ourselves in seeking comfort and ease. Perhaps this year we can begin a serious inquiry into how much is enough to sustain our lives, and how much we might relinquish in the service of the larger good. Such an inquiry must also take place at every level, from the individual to the global. There is a new sense of urgency that makes more people open to such an inquiry. Let us engage together in serious conversations and activities that will foster a more harmonious and healthy way of being in the world.